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What’s the Best Day to Book an Airline Ticket?

In high frequency sale businesses, such as the airline industry, timing is of considerable importance. With most ticket sales being monitored online, prices can change within seconds, saving you a few hundred dollars if you are able to capitalize on that. This is why we recommend all travelers to sign up for alerts to get notified of the best deals available at any particular time.

Leaving that aside, there’s a lot of confusion regarding the ‘right time’ to book a flight. You’ll hear everyone taking a different tune; some will tell you to book tickets during a Wednesday afternoon, while others believe that Tuesday noon is the ideal time to net a flash sale discount. So what’s the right answer?

Best Day

In theory, Tuesday is the best day to book a flight. More specifically, midnight, when travelers can save more than 5% on their flights. In fact, booking at midnight at the start of the week (Monday to Wednesday) is generally cheaper than any other time. This is because it’s during this time that Airlines scrutinize their bookings for the week, so any cancellations are replaced with seat openings. However, midnight isn’t always cheap, as booking a flight later in the week can actually be more expensive than regular times.

Worst Day

The worst day to book a flight is Friday at midnight, when ticket prices can shoot up by 5%. The price hike has a lot to do with the way airlines manage sales, opening them in the beginning of the week and closing them by the start of the weekend.

Is There Really a Best or Worst Day?

You might be wondering as to why we stated “in theory” a few paragraphs ago. Well, while airline ticket prices do get cheaper or expensive during this period, there are a lot of other factors that determine the cost, including the route taken and the airline’s capacity. The best and worst days are deduced by inferring statistical data, which may not apply in real life situations.

Secondly, the savings that you get by booking on a Tuesday aren’t substantial, with domestic flights being about $15 cheaper and international flights being $30 cheaper. Instead of the time of booking, perhaps the departure and arrival date are more important as savvy customers can save up to $100 on domestic flights. International flights get even cheaper, with average savings of $130.

A study by Hopper found that Wednesdays are generally the cheapest days to depart for domestic flights while Tuesdays are ideal for return flights. The logic behind this is simple; people do not prefer to travel in the middle of the week. On the flipside, Sundays are the most expensive days to depart due to the high amounts of traffic airlines face at the end of the weekend.

While statistics show that these days are the cheapest, remember that there are several variables that decide the price of a ticket. So, keep looking until you find a bargain. I would recommend for cheap flights.



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